Google has added the archive file type support to its Google Docs Viewer feature, for both desktop and mobile versions, of Gmail. Now users can view the contents of .zip and .rar files right from the web browser.
Unfortunately this hasn’t been made available directly to the Gmail Mobile Web app — so you can’t view contents of .zip or .rar files from the mobile browser window. We checked the feature and it doesn’t work in any mobile web browsers.
Google Docs Viewer in Gmail has got the support to view the contents of the archive file formats – .zip and .rar. So now if you receive any attachment in .zip and .rar formats in Gmail, then you can click on the View link and check out the contents in the web browser itself.
In the new browser window, if you hover the mouse pointer next to any file in the list of the .zip container, you can click on Actions drop down menu and choose Save to Google Docs. After that, you’ll be able to see all those documents in Google Docs with a respective link.
It indeed is a nifty feature but Google hasn’t extended its support to mobile platforms or mobile web as of now. Unfortunately, the users will have to download entire .zip or .rar files to view its contents. That too requires an appropriate ZIP or archive manager program to be downloaded on the handset.
After checking the native mobile web browsers and also through third party mobile web browser like Opera, we found that the Gmail for mobile web doesn’t offer the View option as yet.
However, we do hope to see that Google Docs gets the view support for .zip and .rar formats any time soon. That can save loads of time and most importantly the mobile data connection.
We hope that Google Mobile platform team implements this Docs View feature for the HTML5 based mobile web app and users can make the best of it. If not the mobile web app then the feature should be at least added in the Gmail app for the Android-based smartphones.